Personal planning during a pandemic

30 juillet 2020 | Julia Amelio, Cynthia P. Carels

( Disponible en anglais seulement )

Many provinces and territories are starting to re-open after months of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, with increased activity comes increased risk of injury, so now is the perfect time to review your personal affairs.

Having the right insurance coverage and estate planning documents in place are just a few key ways to make sure you and your family are prepared for these increased risks.

Insurance Coverage

Our team of Personal Injury lawyers will want to know about all of the potential insurers who may need to respond in the event of an accident. This includes both the insurer of the “at fault” party, as well as any personal insurance you may have.

Examples of personal insurance coverage that will assist in the event of an accident include:

  • your own automobile insurance;
  • your personal or employer health insurance; and
  • any disability or life insurance policies you hold.

As lockdown restrictions are lifted and more people return to their normal daily activities, we recommend reaching out to your insurance broker to ensure you have appropriate coverage in place.

Advance Planning

The pandemic is presenting exceptional challenges for individuals who do not have their legal affairs in order. Effective personal planning includes ensuring you have a Will, Personal Directive and Power of Attorney in place. Each of these documents has a specific purpose:

  • Will – a legal document that sets out your wishes regarding how your property is to be distributed after death and who is responsible for managing that distribution.
  • Personal Directive – a legal document that sets out who can make personal decisions for you in the event that you lose the capacity to make these decisions. This document describes what kinds of decisions the person with authority can make, such as decisions regarding your health care.
  • Enduring Power of Attorney – a legal document that gives one or more persons the authority to manage your money and property on your behalf. This document can take effect immediately or only upon you losing the capacity to make these decisions yourself.

Despite the challenges that COVID-19 presents, there are still mechanisms in place to ensure these documents can be created and executed virtually in front of a lawyer.

For information on preparing your Estate documents virtually in Alberta, see a post written by Jacklynn Pivovar of the Edmonton Office. Sandra Enticknap and Sarah Fitzpatrick, partners in our Vancouver office, have written a similar post regarding electronic witnessing of estate planning documents in British Columbia

Our personal injury clients get the benefit of a large, national firm and all its resources – but at the same cost as a small boutique firm because our contingency fee percentage is the same competitive amount as the others.

Contact us today for a free, no obligation, consultation regarding the benefits and compensation you may be entitled to claim.

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